Shop Orchid Care OrchidTalk Orchid Forum Weather Station Links Nursery

Welcome to OrchidTalk Orchid Forums


The Friendliest Orchid Community on the Internet!


  •  » Learn to Repot your Orchids
  •  » Learn Orchid Care Tips and Secrets
  •  » Find the perfect Orchid for your Growing Environment
  •  » Chat with Orchid Growing Professionals

OrchidTalk - "Bringing People Together to Grow Orchids Better!"


Let us help you grow your Orchids better; Join our community today.


YES! I want to register an account for free right now!


Register or Login now to remove this advertisement.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Fertilizing Phals and Paphs

This is a discussion on Fertilizing Phals and Paphs within the General Orchid Culture forums, part of the Orchid Culture category; Hi, I am hoping someone can help me with fertilizing my orchids. The numbers on ...

Click here to increase the font size Click here to reduce the font size
  1. #1
    meviva's Avatar
    meviva is offline Junior Member
    My Grow Area
    Under Lights.
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    25
    Member's Country Flag

    Default Fertilizing Phals and Paphs

    Hi,

    I am hoping someone can help me with fertilizing my orchids. The numbers on the orchid food that I have are 19-31-17. It says to use a 1/4 teaspoon per gallon every watering, or a 1/2 teaspoon per gallon once or twice a month.

    I have read that you are supposed to fertilize "weakly weekly" and to use a quarter of the recommended amount every watering. Does this apply to plant food that is designated for orchids and already recommends to use every week. I'm not sure if I should follow the package instructions or to reduce the amount. I mostly have phals and paphs. Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Andrea

  2. #2
    smartie2000's Avatar
    smartie2000 is offline Senior Member
    Real Name
    Fren
    My Grow Area
    Under Lights.
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phrags, Paphs, Catts
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada
    Posts
    2,202
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    I think you are doing fine. That's fine since paph and phals are not heavy feeders.

    I didn't fertilize for three months (oops, I was consumed with starting up my reef tank) and my plants are fine. My plants are getting into sheath and spike now, and some unexpected seedlings too suprisingly. I used to (or tried to) do weekly weekly though, but I am not sure if it changed anything. When I did weakly weekly, yes the amount was reduced or there would be too much salt in the water, which would eventually build up.

    Interestingly I overheard a vendor talking to a customer this year's orchid show and the vendor said "no don't do weakly weekly, you are over fertilizing. Just fertilize every month." Obviously they were discussing a problem of some sort but I don't know what. How I am interpreting this comment is that the plants get stimulated by a sudden rush of nutrients.

    What I do recommend is finding a urea (nitrogen compound) free fertilizer. Many fertilizers are urea based and this compound needs to be further broken down by microrganisms (which are not as abunant in bark) before it can be absorbed. Nitrate and Nitrites can be absorbed readily to stimulate leaf growth

    I just did some fertilizing today, and did repotting (but not finished). The plants are all going into active growth as daylength is increasing! What is odd though is that my underlight plants who see no sun at all seem to detect spring...something to think about

  3. #3
    sadie's Avatar
    sadie is offline Senior Member
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phal Vanda Aer Angrm Catts
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    1,422

    Default

    Hey there. I'm no expert on paphs, but for my phals, I do fertilize at least twice per month. Your fertilizer is actually a bloom booster, (the higher middle number is how I know.) YOu can certainly use that fertilizer--I do in the fall and winter, but you might want to find a balanced fertilizer (one where all three numbers are the same or very close) for the rest of the year. 1/4 tsp sounds about right

  4. #4
    Brutal_Dreamer's Avatar
    Brutal_Dreamer is offline Dreaming with my eyes open...
    Real Name
    Bruce Brown
    My Grow Area
    Greenhouse
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Cattleyas & Slippers
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Gender
    Male
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    34,003
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sadie View Post
    Hey there. I'm no expert on paphs, but for my phals, I do fertilize at least twice per month. Your fertilizer is actually a bloom booster, (the higher middle number is how I know.) YOu can certainly use that fertilizer--I do in the fall and winter, but you might want to find a balanced fertilizer (one where all three numbers are the same or very close) for the rest of the year. 1/4 tsp sounds about right
    The is absolutely correct advice. Always try to use a balanced fertilizer for regular feeding.

    Cheers,
    BD

  5. #5
    sadie's Avatar
    sadie is offline Senior Member
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phal Vanda Aer Angrm Catts
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    1,422

    Default

    I should also have mentioned that at least once a month, I water with just water to wash out the pot.

  6. #6
    meviva's Avatar
    meviva is offline Junior Member
    My Grow Area
    Under Lights.
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    25
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Thanks for the responses. I have another kind of plant food....for houseplants not specifically for orchids.......and the numbers are 8-7-6. So I guess I can use this food two or three times a month until Aug. and then I should use the other one in Sept.

  7. #7
    Hollyhock is offline Junior Member
    My Grow Area
    On a Windowsill.
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phrags, Paphs, SLC
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    West Coast, Canada
    Posts
    8
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    My little orchid collection includes several paphs (one of which is just opening today!!!) . When I was at the Victoria Orchid Show last weekend, being newly hooked on orchids, I confess to having been in a something of a trance... just intoxicated by the beauty in the show room and the potential in the sales area... so my brain was somewhere else. I wandered around with my basket of goodies and on leaving noticed my friend had picked up some fertilizer, so I ran back and got some too without really looking at it. Now that I have it home, I find it rather puzzling. It is "Crystal Plug Fertilizer"... 12-2-14. I don't understand why the phosphorus would be so low. It says to use alternate waterings, 1/2 tsp or less to 4 liters of water; and to add a pinch of Epsom salt. Do you think I scrap it for a more balanced fertilizer?

    Thanks,
    April

  8. #8
    John D. is offline Member
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phragmipedium
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Powhatan VA
    Posts
    79

    Default

    The MSU types of fert have a smaller amount of phosphorus. That should be OK to use. See if there is Ca on the label (as CaNO3) if so you may have a formula for rain or RO water. If not it is for well water which usually has some Ca in the carbonate form. 1/2 tsp is about right, If you add epsoms salts it only takes a little 1/16 tsp per gallon if you use it regularly.

  9. #9
    nevinsp's Avatar
    nevinsp is offline Member
    Real Name
    Patrick Nevins
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    All
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    40
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    My phals have been doing great! I keep them on a humidity tray, water once every week and fertilize every other watering. I use a 20-20-20.

  10. #10
    Hollyhock is offline Junior Member
    My Grow Area
    On a Windowsill.
    Favorite Orchid(s)
    Phrags, Paphs, SLC
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    West Coast, Canada
    Posts
    8
    Member's Country Flag

    Default

    Thanks John D. for your comments and reassurance. I don't know what MSU means so whether this fertilizer is one of those or not, I have no idea.

    Many thanks,
    April

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. When to quit fertilizing?
    By knittwit in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: September 8th, 2008, 09:18 PM
  2. Fertilizing....specifics?
    By mtequine in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: April 25th, 2007, 09:01 AM
  3. Fertilizing orchids outside
    By TundraKev in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: June 6th, 2005, 09:00 PM
  4. Fertilizing Orchids
    By justlearning!! in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: May 9th, 2005, 02:26 PM
  5. phals paphs and phrags
    By Cinderella in forum General Orchid Culture
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: August 23rd, 2004, 06:06 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
OrchidTalk --An Orchid Growers Discussion Forum brought to you by River Valley Orchidworks. A World Community where orchid beginners and experts talk about orchids and share tips on their care, cultivation, and propagation.